Monday, April 30, 2012

The Goddess Hunt by Aimee Carter

A vacation in Greece sounds like the perfect way for Kate Winters to spend her first sabbatical away from the Underworld...until she gets caught up in an immortal feud going back millennia. Castor and Pollux have been on the run from Zeus and Hades' wrath for centuries, hiding from the gods who hunt them. The last person they trust is Kate, the new Queen of the Underworld. Nevertheless, she is determined to help their cause. But when it comes to dealing with immortals, Kate still has a lot to learn...

Amiee Carter's first book, The Goddess Test, took me a bit to get into, and then I was hooked. I read Goddess Interrupted by her, and it was the same situation. The Goddess Hunt was a quick short story that engaged me from the beginning.

James, (that rascal), and Kate go to Greece for her six months vacation from Henry. In this short story, we meet Lux (Pollux) and Casey (Castor) and hear their story, as the Gemini twins. I love mythology and it was here that I first heard of them. Sadly, I am a Gemini (old school - you know its crap they changed the signs) but never had I heard this story. When I finished the novel I did a search and learned more about them. Though it does portray Hades (Henry) as a jerk, I find books that inspire to do some sort or research the most worthwhile. They make me want to learn.

Kate stays true to being compassionate, especially to the ornery Lux.

James I think does it so he can sabotage his brother in Kate's eyes.

Henry makes a few brief appearances, showing his concern for Kate, showing his desire to be near her, even though he swore to give her this time. This aspect of the story helped me get through Goddess Interrupted. See my post on Wednesday to understand what I mean.

Short and sweet. Good read.

Thursday, April 26, 2012

What's Your Take (2)

Today's What's Your Take is something I hold very dear to my heart, self-publishing. Recently I self-published and there were a lot of "ins and outs" that I had no idea about.  My blogging friend Bonnie is going to talk about (some of) her journey on this road. One I might add that is very up and coming.


I am self-published and proud.

I started the road to self-publishing in January of 2011. I won’t lie; I actually went back and forth with traditional publishing and self-publishing. A tug of war with my heart and in the end I went with doing it myself.

I honestly think it is the harder road to take and here are some reasons why:

I didn’t have a major publishing house backing me for anything. I had to write numerous drafts, edit numerous drafts, rinse and repeat six times. Sure, traditional published writers do the same thing, but I didn’t have a big time editor helping me out. Nor did I have an agent trying to sell my story in order to get that editor. Although, I did have great beta readers and two wonderful critique partners who helped with the multiple drafts and rewrite process.

I paid a professional artist to design my book cover.

I paid a professional editor to edit the manuscript, as well as copy edits, and proof reads.
I had to spend endless hours researching the differences between Kindle Direct Publishing, Smashwords, Lulu, and various other indie author sites.  In the end I went with Kindle Direct, despite being locked into a ninety day exclusivity contract with them. They simply have the best exposure.
And this first book has been all about exposure. I never expected (and still don’t) to make a whole ton of money off my first book. I simply had a story tell, took all the avenues as professional as possible to get to the end product, and hoped people fell in love with it as much as I did. 

Now that the book is out I have to do all my own marketing. I honestly think this is by far the hardest part of the self-publish industry. It is literally hit and miss. 

One day the book sells and others I see no downloads at all. That’s just how the self-publish business works. And trust me I have poured over sites and interviews of successful self-published authors. None of them have divulged secrets I didn’t already know. I’ve learned it’s a waiting game.

But, my story is published. My story. Not half of a vision that was changed by a major publishing company. My whole vision! When I was little my dream was to become a writer. As I grew into an adult that dreamed changed. I wanted to become a published author.

Two weeks ago I did.

I may never be the next J.K. Rowlings or Amanda Hocking success story, but I lived my dream. I am still living it every day.

I wish self-published authors got a little more credit. However, I think there is a new dawn on the horizon. I think our time is just beginning and I am embracing every moment I can.
If you’ve been on the fence about self-publishing, give it a try. You can always query. Heck, I might still query one day. But for now I am perfectly happy telling my stories and sharing them with the world, my way.

And if you are thinking of taking the self-publishing route here are a few suggestions:
  • 1.     Get a good book cover! There are plenty of sites that do great graphic design work for a reasonable fee. Trust me; a nice cover can make a huge difference.
  • 2.     Get your manuscript professionally edited. I know this can be expensive, but it is well worth it. How many times have you downloaded a book chalk full of mistakes? You don’t want to be that author. Sure a few typos might slip through the cracks, that happens with big time published print books. But do your homework, find a good editor in your price range and really discuss what your manuscript needs.
  • 3.     Get the format right!! Amazon’s formatting for kindles can be wonky. I’ve submitted my novel in every way possible and it still finds a way to have a formatting error sneak in here and there. I just recently learned of a few formatting sites that for a small fee will do it for you, and make sure it is perfect. I am looking into that, and if you think you might have formatting issues, you should too.
  • 4.     Get social!! Twitter, Facebook, Goodreads. Google+, Instagram, Tumblr…ect.  Also – BLOG!! I can’t stress enough how awesome the online writing community can be!! I mainly blog, tweet, and facebook. But find what works best with you and run with it! This will also help later when you release your book, because blog tours are where it’s at people!
  • 5.     Have patience. Rome wasn’t built in a day. Remember why you write, and why you love it. Never lose sight of that, ever.

Now that folks is a crash course in self-publishing. I hope you take Bonnie's advice but more importantly, I hope you go pick up her book. You will love it! Stop by Bonnie's website and find all the links you need.  Bonnie thank you for being part of my "What's Your Take." I am later going to be working with her on some promotion and hopefully she joins my New Author Blog tour this fall!

I wanted to include Bonnie's summary of her book: Nether Bound

Seventeen year old Ava Walker has everything a girl could ask for. She's captain of the cheer squad, has tons of friends, and could easily have any guy she wants. Being popular is easy.
Lying about her entire life, on the other hand, isn't.
Since she was little, Ava has had a connection with the dearly departed. She knows seeing dead people is abnormal, but they never try to communicate, so she does her best to turn a blind eye. The older she gets, the worse her visions become. With more and more ghosts showing up, her secret is on the verge of driving her mad.
The only person Ava ever trusted is her best friend, Devon. Only, she hasn't really talked to him in years and lately he hasn't been acting like himself.
To make things worse, her evil stepfather, Mark, is hitting the bottle harder and harder. Ava hates the alcoholic psycho her mother married a few years ago. To him, beating women is a sport. Lately, the beatings are getting worse. Ava fears it won't be long before her mother is among the ghosts invading her life.
She wishes Mark would just die. When he suddenly does, her life changes forever.
Just when she thinks her family is safe, Mark shows back up.
Not all ghosts are silent, and dear old Daddy wants some serious revenge.
Be careful what you wish for …

I wanted to say "Thanks" to Bonnie for stopping by today!!!

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Fracture by Megan Miranda

Eleven minutes passed before Delaney Maxwell was pulled from the icy waters of a Maine lake by her best friend Decker Phillips. By then her heart had stopped beating. Her brain had stopped working. She was dead. And yet she somehow defied medical precedent to come back seemingly fine. Everyone wants Delaney to be all right, but she knows she's far from normal. Pulled by strange sensations she can't control or explain, Delaney finds herself drawn to the dying. Is her altered brain now predicting death, or causing it?

Then Delaney meets Troy Varga, who recently emerged from a coma with similar abilities. At first she's reassured to find someone who understands the strangeness of her new existence, but Delaney soon discovers that Troy's motives aren't quite what she thought. Is their gift a miracle, a freak of nature-or something much more frightening?

I picked up this one because I thought that it was paranormal. It's not (ish?). Here is the basic run down - Delaney falls under the ice and literally dies for 11 minutes. She comes back as a miracle and everyone is happy, except something isn't quite right with her. Like how she should have some serious brain damage but doesn't. And then there is this whole thing that she is pulled toward the dead thing.

Delaney has a lot of problems in the life she is grateful for. Like her mom, struggles with ever letting her out of her sight. She has a best friend who is dating this awful girl and she is confused about it. She knows people are going to die and she can't do anything about it.

Then there is Troy - Troy's character was hard for me to understand. He seemed to start off like a nice guy, but I feel he was psychologically damaged and I needed more insight on him. I am still not sure if his issues are stemmed from the damage he got from his situation or is he was already like that. However, he does have violent tendencies in the book - and I find it hard to believe if Delaney was afraid of him, that she would continue to be around him.

Decker - I feel bad for Decker throughout the whole book. he watched his best friend die. He had several things happen indirectly to him and he find comfort in the wrong girl's arms. But I udnerstand it. his world was crazy and he needed something not.

Overall, it was a decent read. A good stand alone novel. I did feel like not everything was tied up at the end, some lingering questions were just left una

Monday, April 23, 2012

Half-Blood by Jennifer L. Armentrout

The Hematoi descend from the unions of gods and mortals, and the children of two Hematoi-pure-bloods-have godlike powers. Children of Hematoi and mortals-well, not so much. Half-bloods only have two options: become trained Sentinels who hunt and kill daimons or become servants in the homes of the pures. Seventeen-year-old Alexandria would rather risk her life fighting than waste it scrubbing toilets, but she may end up slumming it anyway. There are several rules that students at the Covenant must follow. Alex has problems with them all, but especially rule #1:Relationships between pures and halfs are forbidden. Unfortunately, she's crushing hard on the totally hot pure-blood Aiden. But falling for Aiden isn't her biggest problem--staying alive long enough to graduate the Covenant and become a Sentinel is. If she fails in her duty, she faces a future worse than death or slavery: being turned into a daimon, and being hunted by Aiden. And that would kind of suck
I immediately picked this one because I had fallen so in love with Obsidian. Jennifer L. Armentrout's craft is one I really enjoy. I haven't talked much about author's crafts much on this blog - I think it's because a craft is very hard to pin-point because every person's is different. It's like a finger print - identifiable to one person. I really enjoy hers.

On to the book - I am very much into the "forbidden love" situation and this story does not disappoint. Alex and Aiden are two different characters. He's older (early 20s - which is nice because it brings an understandable maturity - as opposed to the 17 year old boy being too mature) and Alex is a strong girl - trying to figure out the cosmic scheme of things. Aiden, because of his past situation, volunteers to help Alex train so that she can still attend school in the fall. It's kind of shocking to everyone because Alex is a half-blood. He's very aloof to her except when she does something wrong and then he just gets annoyed.
Slowly the love flames, fan.

There is another factor, the great Apollyon. He's this second-coming and positively arrogant - and likable. I can't say much about him because I don't want to spoil anything, but he is a very important part in the book - well - I think he is going to be more crucial in the second.

Thursday, April 19, 2012

What's Your Take?

What's Your Take?

This is a feature I wanted to start where I have my fellow bloggers post about topics they want to talk about or have a specific interest in. I was lucky enough that when I sent out the call for bloggers, I had several friends sign up! If you are interested on doing a guest-post, please email me. This link will take you to my original call for bloggers. Let me know if you are interested.

Today, Ms. Arianne Cruz is going to my very first guest-blogger! I wanted to thank Arianne for being so kind as to go first. She is posting about the ins and outs about her review process. 

I’m excited to do a guest post for Michelle! Today, I am here to talk about the “how” and “why” of my review process.


Depending on what the review is for, my review posts varies.
  •         For my personal reviews: In these reviews, I go right to it. I say whether I liked the book or not. I would usually start with what I didn’t like, and then proceed to gush about the book.
  •         For blog tour reviews: I usually get media kits when I do blog tours so I have a blurb to post before the review. Once the blurb is pasted in the post, I proceed to do the same steps as my personal reviews.

Regardless of the type of review, I ALWAYS add my favorite quotes/scenes/excerpts at the end of my reviews. I think it’s a great way to introduce the book to the readers and help them decide whether they want to read the book or not.


I always start with the things I didn’t like about the book because I think it is important that authors realize that it’s not okay for me to read a book with spelling, grammatical, or punctuation errors in them. I don’t go and bash the author or anything. In fact, I try to be as polite, but honest, as possible. In my opinion, someone should not publish something and put their name on it if it still has too many errors. It takes away their credibility as a writer.

If it gets so bad AND the story itself is not something of interest to me, I just stop reading the book and I may or may not let the author know that I am doing so. It’s not fair if they are expecting a review from me that will never come.

After the constructive criticisms, I make sure that I gush about what I liked about the book. I think it’s just fair that I balance it out – or maybe write more about what I liked to make the author feel better. Besides, I wouldn’t have finished the book if I didn’t like the story, right?

So there you have it. Let me know how you write your reviews in the comments. If you would like to check out my reviews, feel free to stop by my blog anytime!

You can also follow me on twitter: @ariannecruz07

Thanks for having me, Michelle!

I, personally, love when reviews have excerpts, quotes, or scenes. It gives me a taste for what I will be reading and if I will like the authors voice. Maybe I should practice what I like? What do you think? 

There you have it! The very first What's Your Take feature. Please stop by Arianna's website and see one of her awesome, honest, and fair reviews! I promise you won't be disappointed!

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Obsidian by Jennifer L. Armentrout

Starting over sucks.When we moved to West Virginia right before my senior year, I'd pretty much resigned myself to thick accents, dodgy internet access, and a whole lot of boring.... until I spotted my hot neighbor, with his looming height and eerie green eyes. Things were looking up.And then he opened his mouth.Daemon is infuriating. Arrogant. Stab-worthy. We do not get along. At all. But when a stranger attacks me and Daemon literally freezes time with a wave of his hand, well, something...unexpected happens. The hot alien living next door marks me.You heard me. Alien. Turns out Daemon and his sister have a galaxy of enemies wanting to steal their abilities, and Daemon's touch has me lit up like the Vegas Strip. The only way I'm getting out of this alive is by sticking close to Daemon until my alien mojo fades. If I don't kill him first, that is.

If you read this book you will understand why I am using the following phrase to sum it up: sexually frustrating. Someone disagree with me; I dare you.

In my own, little, world - that sums it up. I don't feel the need to go any further, though I will.

So - hi, who knew aliens could be hott? Because there are two beautiful ones Dee and Daemon - and then some of their friends - DAMN - Alright I am going to get off that.

What I liked about this book - first - our narrator is a book blogger who participates in posts that I do! I loved it, as a blogger I appreciated that and I found it relate-able for me. Our narrator also has my favorite quality - a backbone. Daemon and a select few are horribly nasty to her at times and she doesn't just lay down and take it. She stand up for herself and retaliates. I loved the spaghetti scene because I think everyone has imagined doing that so someone at some time in his/her life.

Clearly, the love relationship was done really well and the extra scenes that I have read from Daemon's point of view I think really explains why he is such an ass. I mean, I figured, but it those few pages gave me clarity.

Dee is so damn likable. I feel for the girl because she just wants a friend but for things outside of her control, she is not supposed to and people don't like her. Like being an alien is a big deal?

On to the plot - Well-rounded - no big holes - the first book is completely summed up and could be a stand-alone, if that redic challenge wasn't at the end. I thought the heritage of the aliens was explained. The bad guys were pretty bad ass. The alien powers were also bad ass.

What I didn't like about this book

Insert crickets -


Go get it. seriously get on it.

Monday, April 16, 2012

No Strings Attached Hop

Thanks to everyone who entered my most recent giveaway! I have contacted the winners and as long as they get back to me they are all set! If not, I will select a few more! 

I liked the idea of this hop because, lets face it, when you go to a hop/giveaway you have like a million options and all kinds of hoops to jump through. I mean, raise your hand if you are guilty of this. *Meekly raises her hand* So Kathy at I am a reader, not a writer. All you have to do is leave your name and email so I can contact you.

What can you win?

My book! Yes - there was nothing in the guidelines to say no self-promotion. Raise your hand if you are guilty for self-promotion *Waves hand dramatically in the air* I'll give away five ebooks.

Here is the cover and the synopsis for you!

When telepathic twins, Piper and Ryder Owens are dumped at Evermore Academy, they thought that the only thing they’d have to worry about was Piper staying out of trouble long enough for them to graduate. They will not, for any reason, be separated. But someone at Evermore knows about their secret and wants to separate them permanently.

But then Piper’s Achilles Heel shows up: a good looking guy. Victor Mira is everything Piper is supposed to avoid, yet she feels drawn to him in a way she never imagined. But Victor is hiding a dangerous secret too, and what he knows could be the one thing that could divide the sisters. Forever

OK - leave me a comment and hop on to the next person!

Here is everyone else who is participating.

Sunday, April 15, 2012

Need of movie titles - See post for specifics :)

I am starting a drama and film elective this upcoming quarter. I really want to focus on movies with similar plot lines and then I wanted to combine my love for Disney and WA BAM! I should do both! I know, genius.

So right now, for certain we are going to view Robin Hood (Disney) and Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves.
I am going to try and convince my principal to let me take the kids to see The Huntsman and then we will watch Snow White.

Are you waiting for more titles?
Don't. I don't have any more pairs :)

So that's what I would like you to help me with. If you can think of a pair of Disney movie and a non-cartoon movie that would be great! I have all the Disney movies - (Side Note: NO ONE HAS EVER BEAT ME AT DISNEY SCENE IT! I AM THAT AWESOME AT IT!)

But, I realize this might be hard to do, so leaving me ideas for different versions of movies, (classics preferably) I will graciously think about your suggestion and no doubt use it somewhere in my teaching endeavors.

Please leave me titles.

ROW80 -Check in

Week 2 - second check in for ROW80.

Week one 4,200 words!
Week two 2,322 words!

Making my total 6,522!

I might have been able to do more, but I picked up my recently, self-pubbed and read it. I mean really read it for the first time, in a long time and I WAS HORRIFIED and embarrassed about the mistakes I found. It hurt. So for the first part of this week, I edited my book (again) and then updated the files. I imagine when I read it again in two months, (because now obviously I have to) that the process will repeat. 

When I did write, what did I work on? Organizing. I got some really great tips and tricks last week and I made up my own system.I color-coded the scenes on my mac (green - beginning, yellow - middle, red - end, gray -not so sure stuff) then I moved them into files based on the color. That alone made the task not so scary and more "doable." From there I started with the three scenes that I have for the very, very beginning and worked on bridging them together. I am not done with it, but plan on working on it today so hopefully the first draft, of the beginning, will be done for next week. 

What about you? What did you work on this week? 

Friday, April 13, 2012

Follow and Feature!

Q: What is one book that you would be nervous to see a movie adaption of because you think the movie if could never live up to the book?

Tiger's Curse - I am a huge fan of the series, do not get me wrong, I would go see it. I just have it pictured so perfectly in my head that if they (movie gods) don't do it correctly it could shatter it for me. I just see Kelsey and Ren going to get the first object and the world they have to go into is very mythical and surreal that ... I don't know. It makes me nervous. Plus I have them, the characters, pictured in my mind. I love how all the characters look in my head and once the movie comes out, those characters, look like the actors... But I am pretty sure that the movie rights and that process has been started. 


Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Spell Bound by Rachel Hawkins

Just as Sophie Mercer has come to accept her extraordinary magical powers as a demon, the Prodigium Council strips them away. Now Sophie is defenseless, alone, and at the mercy of her sworn enemies—the Brannicks, a family of warrior women who hunt down the Prodigium. Or at least that’s what Sophie thinks, until she makes a surprising discovery. The Brannicks know an epic war is coming, and they believe Sophie is the only one powerful enough to stop the world from ending. But without her magic, Sophie isn’t as confident. 

Sophie’s bound for one hell of a ride—can she get her powers back before it’s too late?

I started reading this series two years ago and thought that it was a great new twist on paranormal at the time, a boarding school for supernatural? Great! It was also good for me to read about boarding schools because my novel is set at one.

In this novel, all the characters we met at the beginning (the ones still alive and, well one dead), are forced to return back to Hex Hall by the Casnoff sisters. I think this was a little off. If I got spirited away and right into the clutches of some horrible, evil, witches - I would not handle it smoothly. Sophie kind of just accepts she has to be there. I do not feel that Archer or her, really tried to escape, like I feel their characters would have.

A great thing: ARCHER AND SOPHIE GOT TO BE TOGETHER FOR AN EXTENDED PERIOD OF TIME! I love the name Archer Cross. It is one of my tippy favorites. I love this relationship because they are not these fawning, bleeding heart, sappy characters. They are snarky; they fight. They just seem normal to me. Granted I love the little heart felt moments that do happen in the book, but at no point do I feel they lose themselves in their relationship.

Mom throws a huge twist into the first two chapters of the book. Kind of shocking.

I thought the end battle scene should have been more, because it was very much over before I was ready. And when that person dies, who I will not say who, I felt very much like Prim's death, it happened so quickly and was thrown at me, that I had to re-read to process it. I felt Demonglass's action at the end was better - more developed, more complete to me.

And as always, its hard to write a review that doesn't spoil the first two books. But overall, I really liked and enjoyed the series.

What were your thoughts?

Monday, April 9, 2012

Cinder by Marissa Meye

Humans and androids crowd the raucous streets of New Beijing. A deadly plague ravages the population. From space, a ruthless lunar people watch, waiting to make their move. No one knows that Earth’s fate hinges on one girl. . . . 

Cinder, a gifted mechanic, is a cyborg. She’s a second-class citizen with a mysterious past, reviled by her stepmother and blamed for her stepsister’s illness. But when her life becomes intertwined with the handsome Prince Kai’s, she suddenly finds herself at the center of an intergalactic struggle, and a forbidden attraction. Caught between duty and freedom, loyalty and betrayal, she must uncover secrets about her past in order to protect her world’s future. 

This book has a Cinderella spin - absolutely - but it was nothing like what I was expecting. Like at all.

So how was it like Cinderella? The evil step-mother that is for sure- man, is she a royal pain in the @ss. Sheesh. There were two stepsisters - though one seemed really sweet and was kind to Cinder. There's a hottie for a prince charming - who is kind and loves "kingdom." And then there is Cinder(ella) the girl who works super hard, has no self-confidence. Oh! And there is a ball! I love ball scenes.

How is not like Cinderella? Um, there is a plague. She's a cyborg. There are no mice that make her a dress (sad I know.). Cinder harbors something within her cyborg parts that could help man-kind. But it's not as simple as that. The Queen of the Lunars (people who live on the moon) cause problems for our Cinderella and Prince Charming, a great deal of problems actually - the big one - trying to rule earth.

The relationship between Prince Kai and Cinder is really sweet. Kai is the ideal ruler. He's compassionate, thinks of his people, and being young he's figuring out he has a backbone. He seeks out Cinder's help because his android has malfunctioned and she is the best mechanic. And through a series of events, their paths cross frequently, and you watch two young people lean on each other as they whether the Lunars, the plague, deaths, and secrets.

Overall, a very surprising book that I really enjoyed. It should be put on your to-read book. A must.

Sunday, April 8, 2012

ROW 80 Check-in 1


My first check-in with ROW80!

I went on vacation so I had some time and I did awesome!

Week one 4,200 words!


I have been working on this book for a little bit now and feel I am ready to start piecing it together. I am a panster by nature, so I have multiple scenes from the start to the end but nothing really bridging them. So while on vacation, I noticed I am at that point. And man, am I overwhelmed about it. I forgot how hard it is. I have these "clear as day" scenes in my head but bridging them is very murky. Any suggestions on how to make it easier?

Saturday, April 7, 2012

Jessica Rules the Dark Side by Beth Fantaskey

Here is my review for Jessica's Guide to Dating the Dark Side.
It’s one thing to find out you’re a vampire princess. It’s a whole other thing to actually rule. Newly married Jessica Packwood is having a hard enough time feeling regal with her husband, Lucius, at her side. But when evidence in the murder of a powerful elder points to Lucius, sending him into solitary confinement, Jessica is suddenly on her own. Determined to clear her husband’s name, Jessica launches into a full-scale investigation, but hallucinations and nightmares of betrayal keep getting in her way. Jessica knows that with no blood to drink, Lucius’s time is running out. Can she figure out who the real killer is—and whom she can trust—before it’s too late?
I am going to start with the cover. I like these covers because they leave the guy a mystery. I have the description in the book about how Lucius looks and my brain takes that information, processes it, and then I create those features. Once a male character is given a face, and lets say I am not crazy attracted to him, the character in the book loses a little appeal, and sometimes a lot of appeal. I like Lucius and am super happy he is perfectly stored in my brain. Anyone else feel this way? 

On to the pages! While Jessica has been a pretty strong character with great attributes, she finds herself in a vampire kingdom. I think this is one of the few times I will actually accept my leading character being a bit weak. Don't get my wrong, she by no means is helpless in this book. She has a lot of enemies going on this book trying to prevent her from getting the "vote" and keep Lucius away from her. 

Ranerio I thought was a fantastic addition to this story. He brought in humor, loyalty, and a strong sense of danger. I mean he basically is - no wait, I won't spoil it. But suffice to say he is pretty bad ass. While my dear Lucius is caged, Ranerio steps in offering Jessica guidance, training to stake some vampires and protection. 

Mindy's appearance, while a good addition to the story. She was valuable to have brought back in, but would the vampire community let this outspoken American teenager run around the castle? I feel like their rules were really strict and then in walked Mindy. 

I did figure it out, the bad guy, what was happening to Jessica really quickly. I finished the book really quickly but I wasn't dying to know what happened next because I thought I figured it out. This takes away from the intensity of my love for the book, but in the end, it was solid and I liked it!